When it comes to Media Light, however, fourteen absolutely equals twelve.
We are fourteen students here. There are more staff and other people, but fourteen registered students. There were twelve disciples. Twelve men who decided to forsake everything and follow a phenomenon. Those men took a leap of faith into the unknown, and now, here we are doing the same. Fourteen students from all ages, genders, ethnicities, cultures, and backgrounds.
When I first came to Media Light, I knew little of what to expect. I knew, for the most part, what it was about, but I underestimated all of it. I underestimated the depth of learning, the pace, the people, and the impact it would have on my life. I viewed Media Light as a place to get away from my life for a bit, learn some skills, and vacation a bit. I absolutely did not expect the spiritual impact it would have.
I have a bad habit of expecting events, people, practices, and other things to change my personal circumstances in life. I went to a Christian school expecting it to make me a “good Christian.” I squandered that. I helped out at church, volunteered, and tried to make myself feel better through good works. Well, it did nothing. I came to Media Light expecting to either have a spiritual epiphany or to put up a shield to keep myself from being affected by the spiritualness of the school. I failed in both ways. I never had an epiphany, and I couldn’t keep up my “God firewall.”
As I sit here at 3:10AM in Chiang Mai on a short break from classes, I can’t help but notice the parallels of the last month here, and the life of Jesus’ disciples. I paused life and jumped into an unknown. The disciples did the same. I took a leap of faith knowing that “something” was out there, but had no idea exactly what. The disciples did the same. I am living together with people I never knew before now, from all different walks of life, and we are all going on this journey together. The disciples did the same.
While we don’t have a human person to follow like Jesus’ followers did, we do have the example Christ modeled for us through his ministry. I never really know what the next day holds for me, and I am never anxious or stressed out about that. I have made lifelong friends that are like family to me. I have discovered parts of myself that I never knew existed, and I have also dusted off old talents and gifts of God that I failed to utilize like He intended.
I still have a month left here, and I do miss home, but this is already a time of my life that I will never forget. A time when 30+ people came together for a time and a place that could only be divinely woven together. I would be lying if I said I knew what would happen after this school, but not knowing doesn’t bother me. If anything, I have learned that to plan out life is to limit myself. When I start making lists of what I want to accomplish in life, I limit myself to only those successes. While they may be good, they become my box. My benchmark by which I use to grade my life.
God is a creator. He creates and makes new things. Nothing he makes is the same. As God created and molded the heavens, Earth, time, and space, I know that he will surely guide my life if I let him. I must make more leaps. God wants me to trust him. He wants to show me how powerful and amazing he is. Before Media Light, I am not sure that I would easily let him. I was too comfortable in my little patch of life. So afraid of it cracking, that I would not give myself the opportunity to grow and be stretched.
I have been stretched here. Mentally, emotionally, and spiritually, this has been both one of the most stressful times of my life, as long as one of the most satisfying and beneficial. Whether I go on to do media or not, I can show the love of Christ through whatever medium God blesses me with. While media is quickly evolving and more easily accessible than ever, media means nothing without an intentional meaning. A meaning of hope, life, love, and grace. Media Light doesn’t just give me the tools I need to produce excellent media, but it has taught me how to connect and be intentional with anyone and everyone I meet, and to show them the love of Christ in the most genuine and originally intended way as possible.
Like the twelve disciples, we are fourteen students. Fourteen people on a journey to follow Jesus and to be an intricate part of his purpose for our world. Media Light is not just media, it’s love. It’s grace. It’s passion. It’s growing. It’s learning. It’s God’s will for our lives.
P.s This article is originally posted on http://nathangonthier.blogspot.com/, Nathan Gonthier is currently studying at MediaLight 8.0)